Soham Grammarians - 2018 Reunion Luncheon

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This year we welcomed four new faces: Mr Antony Cornell (Physics 67-72), Peter Leonard SG65, Timothy Leonard SG61, Lionel Partridge SG63.

Six former SGS staff were present: Mr Barry Bartholomew, Mr Dick Bozeat, Mr Tony Cornell, Mr Bryan Hollamby,  Mr Peter Scott and Mr Chris Wain.

Our MC this year was John Dimmock SG59, who has succeeded Chris Bent SG53.

John is also our Box Office manager. John's wife Sue and daughter Emma again assisted with the drinks. John also purchased bouquets, drink, obtained the necessary licence and is the reunion book-keeper.
Perhaps next year he will be sporting the
dickie bow in SGS colours worn by his predecessor ...

Guests of Honour
Dr Carin Taylor - Executive Head of The Staploe Education Trust, who has not missed any of our events during her tenure when she began as Principal  of Soham Village College in 2006.
Mrs Ann Jarman -
daughter of Mr CJ Ford

Tamaris Taylor -
our principal speaker and eldest daughter of Peter Askem.

The Grace was given this year by Mr Antony Cornell, Physics 67-72 and formerly Pastor at The Lighthouse in Ely:

Heavenly Father, we thank You for this time together with each other and You.
We receive this food with thanksgiving, blessed by You.
We remember the times that we met in this hall to sing hymns and to pray in our daily assemblies.
We rejoice that you blessed us then and you bless us now. Amen

John Dimmock SG59
John welcomed Grammarians and their guests and our Guests of Honour.

reminded us of our reunion tradition of passing the Rose Bowl to collect for the serving team made up of senior students from SVC.

Later he made a presentation of a sharing gift to Sara Coutts who so ably managed our catering.

John presented bouquets to our Guests of Honour ...

The Roll Call - we stood in turn to state our name, years at SGS, where we lived then and where we live now ... and as usual some found it necessary to consult their name badges.


Creamy mushrooms on toasted wholemeal bread, with salad garnish
Main Course
Chicken Chasseur with Duchess Potato, Cauliflower Cheese, Baton Carrots and Peas
Individual Sherry Trifle
Cheese and Biscuits
Coffee or Tea

Towards the end of the Lunch we sang Happy Birthday to Peter Nicholls SG 39 who would be celebrating his 90th Birthday on the 9th October. Peter's knowledge of the area is encyclopaedic.

A special card and our gift - a new book on Little Bookham in World War 1, published by the Leatherhead & District Local History Society - were presented to him by Frank, who lives in Leatherhead, a few miles from Little Bookham, and is a member of the History Society.

Peter spent part of his childhood in Little Bookham, before his family moved to Burwell where he still lives.

He is related to Rusty Bridgeman SG37 who was an RAF pilot who lost his life in 1961.

photo: Sue Dimmock

The Loyal Toast was given by Alan Hill SG53, one of our regulars, who travels from Toronto.

At the end of the talk John reminded us that two Soham Grammarians were known to have received high awards since our last reunion:

Dr Simon Curtis SG67 received the Sir Colin Spedding Award, presented by HRH The Princess Royal, President of the National Equine Forum. “Given in recognition of his exceptional practical and educational contributions to farriery over 45 years.” more details

Professor Geoff Fernie SG59, our speaker last year was awarded The Order of Canada for “his advancements in the field of rehabilitation engineering, notably in the development of therapies and products designed to assist individuals with limited mobility.” This is one of the highest civilian honours awarded in Canada. more details

Dr Carin Taylor's welcome to Soham Village College came at the end of the talk, as part of her presentation on the impressive Art facilities provided in the Fitzwilliam Arts Lab on site, but is shown here for continuity.

She welcomed the Grammarians to Soham Village College and thanked them for inviting her to their Lunch.  She thanked Frank Haslam and John Dimmock for all their work in ensuring that this event continued to thrive each year.

Dr Taylor shared news of the school, which included excellent results in 2018 which it is believed will place Soham Village College in the top 15% of all schools nationally.   This is great news for the community; the school serves a fully comprehensive intake.  Soham Village College was once again significantly over-subscribed and the school currently has almost 1400 students on roll.

As customary after the meal, John Dimmock presented the cash from the silver Rose Bowl that had been passed round to representatives from the very smartly turned out SVC senior student team that so capably served us, supervised this year by Sara Coutts. Many commented favourably on the quality of the catering.

Two of the serving team receive the Rose Bowl collection on behalf of their colleagues

Sara Coutts receives a gift for the Catering Team

Our apologies to Stan Harley SG53 who was all set to give the Toast To Absent Friends. In sorting out some technical issues this was sadly overlooked:

The Reunion Booklet listed those whose deaths had been made known to us since the last reunion: Peter Askem 54-72, Philip Bignell 1951, Reg Brown 1947, Peter Deasley 1954, John Firby 1949, ACV Foster 53-57, Chris Graves 1951, Philip Henderson 1964, Jack Hoxley 1935, John George Lester 1937, John Marven 1944, Trevor Newton 1944, Barry Sheldrick 1957, Roger Sulman SG52, Colin Thornhill 1940.

John Dimmock asked us to note that:

Who booked for the 2018 Lunch? And who sent apologies?

Some 2018 Reunion Luncheon photos

Please contact the editor about any missing or incorrect IDs. Name and entry year are shown.
All images by Frank Haslam unless otherwise stated

Sue Dimmock again presided over the Drinks.
She was assisted by Emma Hawes.

Frank looking for gremlins. Is it on?
photo: Sue Dimmock

L-R: David Parr SG68 - Tamaris Taylor - Edward Kisby SG67
all former pupils of the Acremont Preparatory School, Ely

L-R: Mr Barry Hollamby - Mr Bryan Bartholomew - Mr Peter Scott - Mr Dick Bozeat

L-R: Dr Carin Taylor - Tamaris Askem - Tim Leonard SG61 - John Dimmock SG59 - Peter Leonard SG65 - Ann Jarman

L-R: Lionel Partridge SG63 - Simon Curtis SG67 - Kenn Hunter SG67

L-R: (Tim Leonard SG61) - Mr Bryan Hollamby - Mr Chris Wain - Mr Barry Bartholomew

L-R: Andrew Cullum SG58 - Barry Lowe 55 - Mrs Kay Lowe - Gary Dew SG62

L-R: Ernest Cowley SG52 - Albert Ware SG52 - Kenn Purchase SG51

L-R: Michael Miller SG70 - James Gilbert SG65 - John Lester SG65 - Mrs Barbara Battom

L-R: Mr Antony Cornell - Alan Dench SG67 -  Edmund Reed SG67

L-R: Donald Monk SG55 - Alan Breeze SG54 - Fred Eden SG44 - Ian Hobbs SG48
Tamaris  was staying in Cambridge and Alan very kindly provided  transport.
Note the discussion in the background.

Not a short discussion then ... L-R: Chris Bent SG53 - John Dimmock SG59 - Denis Wilkins SG53

The Edward Armitage Memorial Tree continues to prosper.
It was a wet day and nearly 6pm when this was taken.

The talk on the life of Mr Peter Askem (Art & Pottery 1954-72)

images: unless otherwise stated, Frank Haslam
Page created 9 Oct 18: last updated 18 Oct 18
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